The crew of USS Carr (FFG 52) and members of an embarked U.S. Coast Guard Tactical Law Enforcement Team (TACLET) rescued a stranded mariner Oct. 3 off the coast of the Florida Keys.
Carr's bridge team spotted the man in distress through their binoculars before dispatching a rescue team.
The Canadian man had been adrift for three days after his vessel experienced a loss of electricity and propulsion. He was without a working radio or signaling device.
"He was in a 26-foot boat in open waters and was very difficult to see," said Lt. j.g. Mark Hardzinski, Carr's navigator. "After spotting him, I noticed he was actually signaling distress."
Carr immediately sent a team of Sailors and the embarked Coast Guard TACLET on the ship's small boat to provide assistance. The team installed a replacement battery and was able to start the engine.
According to Carr rescue personnel, the man was exhausted, and the boat's navigation gear was malfunctioning. Carr escorted the vessel toward the nearest safe harbor before handing over escort duties to a local Coast Guard patrol boat.
"These search-and-rescue cases happen all the time," said Coast Guard Chief Maritime Enforcement Specialist Jason King. "But with him being lost for three days without reliable communications equipment, it was blind luck anyone found him."
Carr is homeported in Norfolk, Va. and is on a scheduled deployment to the 4th Fleet area of responsibility.
Article by Ensign Brian T. Lance, USS Carr Public Affairs